Why Candidates in Mamata's Former Constituency are Talking About Netaji

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Why Candidates in Mamata's Former Constituency are Talking About Netaji

Candidates from Jadavpur constituency in Kolkata: (Left) Trinamool's Sugata Bose and (Right) CPI-M's Sujan Chakraborty

Kolkata:  On the last day of campaigning in the Lok Sabha elections, on a day of mega roadshows, some candidates opted for a more personal style to seek votes.

Among them were Communist Party of India - Marxist's Sujan Chakraborty, who is contesting from Jadavpur is South Kolkata, and his rival, Trinamool's Sugata Bose.

Mr Chakraborty is an engineer from the prestigious Jadavpur University and Mr Bose is a professor of history at Havard University.

And while Mr Chakraborty talks about jobs on the campaign trail, on Rabindra Nath Tagore's birth anniversary on Friday, May 8, Mr Bose sang the famed poet's songs.

Mr Bose is also the grand-nephew of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and son of three-time Trinamool Member of Parliament from Jadavpur, Krishna Bose.

"I have got a very good response from the people of Jadavpur. Netaji used to say his family and country are coterminous. So if I belong to Netaji's family, so does everybody else in India," he says.

Mr Chakraborty is undaunted by his rival's illustrious CV.

"I am not the grandson of a known person. But I am a disciple of Netaj ji. I pursue his policies, his Left-leaning approach. My opponent should explain what he is pursuing," said the CPI-M candidate.

Incidentally, Jadavpur includes parts of South 24 Parganas district, where many voters were investors in the doomed Saradha Group.

Both rivals know the issue will be a key electoral one.

"There should be a thorough investigation and everyone who was involved in swindling people of their savings, regardless of their party affiliations, should be brought to justice," says Mr Bose.

"It is the biggest scam, where the highest number of people were involved. Everyone knows the ruling party is involved," alleges Mr Chakraborty.

So what makes Javadpur such an important constituency?

This is the seat that sent Mamata Banerjee, Trinamool supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister, to Parliament for the first time in 1984.

So it is imperative for Mr Chakraborty to wrest it back while for Mr Bose, it is vital to win this seat for the party one more time.


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